|Oak Treatment||French Oak|
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Chateau Ausone is St. Emilions superstar, the quality equivalent of a Médoc first growth. Dense, rich, subtle and yet not heavy, it is one of the longest-lived, most elegant and concentrated Bordeaux wines.
Chateau Ausone is known for elegance, finesse, and extraordinary personality and concentration. Its fascinatingly complex aromatics (of characteristic crushed stone and minerals accompanied by black currants, plums and licorice) are evenly matched by intense -- but not heavy - flavors in great balance. It is more tannic than the average St. Emilion, and may need several years of aging before it is at its most approachable. Its plateau of maturity is 15-50 years following the vintage.
The estate was founded by two families, the Chatonnets and the Cantenants. In more recent times, for two centuries, Chateau Ausone was the property of the Vauthier and the Dubois-Challon families. Today it belongs to Alain Vauthier and his sister Catherine, who bought their aunt Hélyette Dubois-Challon’s share in 1997. Alain Vauthier runs the estate and makes the wine. Since 2005 his daughter Pauline, a qualified oenologist, has been working with him.
The site is exceptional: divided between the limestone plateau and Saint-Emilion’s calcareous clay slope, facing east-south-east and sheltered on its north and west sides, Ausone was one of very few Saint-Emilions to come unscathed through the terrible frosts of February 1956. The 7 hectares of vineyard, lying in a single plot around the chateau, are planted with 55% of Cabernet Franc and 45% of Merlot. The vines are very old, with an average age of 50 years. Their low yield (33 hectolitres per hectare) in part explains the wine’s concentration and its potential for improving over time.